T.C. Williams High School, home of the football team that was famously featured in the 2000 Disney film Remember The Titans, has decided to change its name in an attempt to distance itself from its racist past.
The Virginia high school was named after segregationist Thomas Chambliss Williams, who served as the school system’s superintendent from the mid-1930s until 1963. He was known for doing “everything possible to slow down the process of integration in Alexandria,” according to the school’s website.
After a petition to change the school’s name surfaced last summer amid the Black Lives Matter movement, the Alexandria City Public School Board elected Thursday to change the name of T.C. Williams High School to Alexandria High School. The school’s new name will be implemented starting July 1, 2021.
The news arrives exactly 50 years after T.C. Williams’ historic 1971 football season, in which the team integrated and went on to win the state championship, ultimately inspiring the Denzel Washington-led dramatization, Remember The Titans. Fans of the movie should find comfort that, despite the name change, the school’s athletic teams will still feature the Titans moniker.